Fashion, entertainment, celebrities, models and controversies, they all go hand in hand. No matter how hard the magazines try to keep themselves away from doing something that is going to offend the public they always land up in a scandal or two. Be it the black issues or the naked photos, people have to speak! Below is a list of some magazine covers that have been famous for all the wrong reasons. Have a look and decide whether the controversy was worth creating or not.
Life, November 1965
The main people to oppose this cover of Life magazine were the politicians. Yes, this cover showed the arresting image of a VietCong prisoner during the Vietnam war and this turned many Americans against the parties. Photographed by Paul Schutzers, this cover remains controversial till this date.
Esquire Magazine, April 1968
This one was the biggest controversy ever. In this issue of Esquire, Mohammad Ali posed with six arrows on his body after he refused to join the US military because of his religious beliefs and practices. The controversy arose because the pattern that was used to portray Ali's greatness was very similar to that of “The Martyrdom of St. Sebastian”.
Esquire Magazine, May 1969
As they say controversies sell the best, this cover of Esquire boosted the magazine's circulation from 500,000 to 2 million. Photographed by George Lois, this cover depicted soup can and a Warhol, which arose controversies as it was directing towards the American avant-grade art movement.
Playboy Cover, October 1971
Photographed by Richard Fegley, this was the first Playboy cover which had an African-American woman on it. This October,1971 copy gained criticism over black issues. Though later many magazines saw similar kind of covers, this one was the first to create a controversy.
Rolling Stone, January 1981
Though controversial but this cover of Rolling Stone mag is one of the last memories of John Lennon. Anne Leibovitz took this naked picture of the star just hours before he was shot outside his flat. It is still called the most popular cover over the past 40 years.
Vanity Fair Cover, August 1991
This Demi Moore cover of Vanity Fair is by far the most controversial of all. Photographed by Annie Leibovitz, Moore posed nude while she was pregnant, which sent bad vibes among the people. Women described it as shameful and disgusting.
Rolling Stone, June 1992
This cover gained a lot of criticism as it had the naked pictures of the band, Red Hot Chili Peppers. People thought it was offensive as the magazine was very famous and viewable by all and it would lay a bad impact on the children as well as the teenagers.
Vanity Fair Cover, August 1993
It seems that Vanity Fair's team has something with the month of August. Yes, after Demi Moore's cover, we gain got to see K.D. Lang and Cindy Crawford on the front page of the mag which created a lot of controversy. Lang got wrong comments on her decision to join PETA.
Rolling Stone, September 1993
September 1993's issue of Rolling Stone magazine was offensive to many people. It had the-then sensation, Janet Jackson, topless on the cover. The controversial part was that Janet's breasts were covered by anonymous hands. Till this date it is remains the most controversial images of the nineties.
Rolling Stone, April 1999
Back in 1999, when Britney Spears was photographed for Rolling Stone magazine, it didn't sent good vibes among the masses. Spears, who was just an innocent teenager that time was seen posing on the cover in her underwear on the bed. It was taken as an offense to the social activists and parents.
Esquire Magazine, December 2000
This crotch shot of the-then president, Bill Clinton was greeted with a lot of opposition by the political parties. People linked it to the Monika Lewinsky scandal, which brought a lot of wrong publicity for Clinton as well as the mag.
Entertainment Weekly Cover, May 2003
It was indeed something very daring, Dixie Chicks posed all nude on the front page of Entertainment Weekly in opposition to the-then president, George W. Bush's act of invading Iraq. They painted words like, boycott, free etc on their bodies, which sent waves of anger among the supporters of Bush.
Seventeen Cover, May 2003
Photo-shopped images are very common on the magazine covers but this photograph of Sarah Michelle Gellar was indeed very horrible. The actress sued the magazine on printing her false image. The team had to pay a lot for this one.
Rolling Stone, January 2006
Photographed by David LaChapelle, this cover of Rolling Stone mag depicted singer Kayne West as a Christ figure with a set of thorns, which was greeted with a lot of criticism by the religious fans of the magazine and in the cover story, West agreed to his porn addiction which sent more waves of anger among the people.
Baby Talk, August 2006
The magazine cover showed a woman breastfeeding her child and was taken very offensively by the masses. Women thought it was disgraceful to have this picture seen by their children. Though the motive behind the cover was not bad as they wanted to show a survey where 57% women opposed breastfeeding in the public but it was greeted with a lot of criticism.
People Magazine, March 2008
This shot of the Brangelina twins didn't prove to be very nice for the People's magazine. They were accused of getting this picture in order to get a scoop on rest of the world with the first baby pictures. Though the magazine denied all the charges but the controversy still remains.
Vogue, April 2008
This one was a pure racial controversy. When Gisele Bundchen and sports star Lebron James posed for the April 2008 issue of Vogue, people despised it calling it as racist portrayal of King Kong. The point was to make these stars pose as people with perfect bodies but was taken as the revival of criminalization of black men by the masses.
Art Monthly, July 2008
This issue where six-year old Olympia Nelson posed naked on the cover was something that was very offensive to the public. The main controversy was that small children shouldn't be made do such things. Photographed by Polixeni Papapetrou, this picture is still considered as "not-appropriate".
OK Magazine, June 2009
After the tragic death of MJ, OK Magazine decided to pay a tribute to him in their own plus unique way. But it was not taken very nicely by Michael's fans, they felt offended as they didn't want to see their favorite singer this way.
Vanity Fair, February 2010
Critics called it as the 'Colorless Face Of Hollywood'. Vanity Fair's Feb issue had all the white glam dolls in the cover and they named it as 'A New Decade of Hollywood', which was arose many controversies as there was not even one black lady in it.